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How to stay safe at festivals

Whether you’re heading to Wireless, Download or Glastonbury, lots of young people will be heading to music festivals over the summer. 

We’ve put together the ultimate guide to staying safe at a festival.

Arriving safely

If you’re driving, expect queues when arriving, park up and make a mental note/take a photo of where you’ve parked.

If you’re travelling another way, check with your festival for the nearest train station – some even put on dedicated coach services.  


Your tent is going to be your home for the weekend, so make sure you choose the right tent! 

  • Pack light! Its usually a long walk/wait to get into the festival. Here’s a handy list of what to bring with you. 
  • Where’s the nearest toilet and shower?  
  • Don’t leave valuables in your tent, which brings us on to the next point…

Top tip: The best camping areas will fill up quickly, so get there early and avoid camping near fences or trees, people tend to use these as toilets!


Most festival goers are there to have a good time. Unfortunately, some people have ulterior motives. 

It’s important to remain vigilant and be mindful of your belongings to prevent theft 

Festivals are loud and crowded places, making it prime for spiking: where someone puts alcohol or other drugs into a person’s drink or body without their knowledge or consent.

  • This can lead to people being in a vulnerable position, leading to violence, or sexual assault/harassment. 
  •  Stay with your friends or put a buddy system in place to make sure you’re not alone. Agree on a meeting point (a landmark that can’t change). 
  • If you are a victim of a crime, report to the police or onsite festival security staff.

How do I reduce the risk of spiking?

  • Buy your own drinks (don’t accept drinks from strangers!)
  • Never leave your drink unattended
  • Cover your drinks with Anti-spiking covers. 

Alcohol and other drugs

  • UK law prohibits you from being in possession of illegal drugs and all festivals have strict security measures in place. If you are found with drugs on site, you may be ejected and/or arrested.  
  • Drinking alcohol throughout the day can lead to overdoing it.  If you are going to drink alcohol, pace yourself and alternate with soft drinks or water. 
  • Alcohol and drugs can impair your judgement. Don’t feel pressured into drinking or taking drugs. Everyone is there to have fun in their own way!  
  • And, if you’re having a bad time and feeling unwell, seek the medics or welfare staff and be honest with them. They’re there to help you, without judgement.  

Sexual health

Remember, unprotected sex can expose you to unwanted pregnancies and STI’s, so if you’re thinking about having sex , use protection to avoid coming home with anything unwanted! (Many festivals give condoms away for free) 

  • Consent should always be mutual and continuous; you should never feel pressured into doing something you don’t want to and have the right to say no or change your mind at any time. 
  • Make sure you stock up on your contraceptive pill before going. Set reminders on your phone, so you don’t forget to take it.  
  • If you have had unprotected sex, or you think the contraception has failed, visit the welfare or medic team to see about getting emergency contraception.  


Looking after your physical and mental health will make sure you’re ready for whatever the weekend has to offer! 

Getting enough sleep, eating regularly, and staying hydrated are key if you want to stay on top form. Free drinking water is available at all festivals, so bring your reusable bottle. 


Festivals are a fun and exciting way to spend your summer. (What’s better than dancing to your favourite artist in a field with your mates?) But it’s important to stay safe when doing it. Stay with your mates, be aware of your surroundings and ultimately trust your instinct. If something doesn’t feel right, it usually isn’t. 

How to get help

If you have any more questions on this area or would like to speak to somebody about this topic, have a look at the links or search for your local services in the blue box below. Alternatively you can always contact your school nurse.

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